Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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5 College Sophomore

Academics: Right now, I'm leaning towards a Japanese major here. My professors have been great so far, especially my language teachers. They try to make us speak in Japanese as much as possible, but don't try to take the fun out of it!

4 College Sophomore

Academics: Our school offers majors focused mainly on Liberal Arts, but we have options for those who like science and math too! I've only heard complaints about one or two professors, but everyone seems to have a great relationship with their professors.

5 College Sophomore


4 College Sophomore


4 College Freshman

Academics: An Economics major requires a lot of number crunching and critical thinking.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 327th
    Smartest Professors
  • 380th
    Most Flexible Curriculums
  • 400th
    Best Academic Advisers
  • 458th
    Professors Most Interested in Classes
  • 499th
    Best Use of Teaching Assistants

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Jessie Sawyer
Farmington, CT
English with a concentration in Creative Writing and a Spanish minor
View all previous student authors

Bates professors tend to be outstanding. Most are experts in their fields, and they generally bring a high degree of enthusiasm to the classes they teach. There are certainly some who, because they are tenured, don’t care much about bringing new approaches to their courses, but most professors care very deeply about the subjects they’ve chosen to teach. On the whole, Bates professors are very approachable, and some are even open to receiving phone calls from overstressed students during the wee hours of the morning. The school’s small class sizes and low student-to-teacher ratio ensure that students are able to develop close relationships with their professors if they choose to do so. This encourages an atmosphere of mutual respect—many professors will ask their students to call them by their first names, and often professors request that students aid them in research projects and other such endeavors. Because so many classes are small and discussion-oriented, students are often deeply involved in their courses.

Probably the biggest issue facing Bates academics at the moment is general education requirements. In order to graduate, students must fulfill these requirements, which, coupled with a student’s major requirements—most of which involve writing a senior thesis—can be very difficult for a student to complete. Compounding the problem is the fact that entry-level natural science courses are almost always over-enrolled—some by as many as 100 students. So, students who are taking courses simply to fulfill gen ed requirements compete for places with students who are taking the courses for their majors or because they’re genuinely interested in the subjects. Aside from the gen ed requirements, students have few complaints about classes and professors at Bates. The system may have a few flaws, but the professors and the courses offered are above average, to say the least.

Facts & Statistics

Student-Faculty Ratio
Full-Time Instructional Faculty
Part-Time Instructional Faculty
Total FT Faculty
Faculty with Terminal Degree
Average Faculty Salary
Full-Time Retention Rate
Transfer-Out Rate
Graduation Rate
Programs/Majors Offered
Academic/Career Counseling?
Remedial Services?
Class Sizes
  • Fewer than 20 students: 67%
  • 20 to 49 students: 29%
  • 50 or more students: 4%
Instructional Programs
Occupational: No
Academic: Yes
Continuing Professional: No
Recreational/Avocational: No
Adult Basic Remedial: No
Secondary (High School): No
Special Credit Opportunities
Advanced Placement (AP) Credits: Yes
Dual Credit: No
Life Experience Credits: No
Degrees Awarded
Bachelor's degree
Most Popular Majors
  • Economics and Econometrics: 5%
  • History, General: 4%
  • Political Science and Government, General: 4%
  • Psychology: 6%
Special Study Options
  • Study abroad
  • Teacher certification (below the postsecondary level)
Best Places to Study
  • Ladd Library
  • Pettengill Hall (study areas and department lounges)
  • The Ronj
Tips to Succeed
  • Be prepared to work harder than you've ever had to.
  • Don't ever hesitate to ask questions if you don't understand what's going on.
  • Don't take any 8 a.m. classes unless you really have to.
  • Live near your friends senior year.
  • Pettigrew and Pettengill are two very different buildings.
  • Remember that your computer is for doing work, not just chatting on AIM, checking your e-mail and Facebook.
  • Take advantage of the small class sizes, and establish personal relationships with some of your professors.
  • Take at least one late-night trip up Mount David (from that distance, even Lewiston looks pretty).
  • Take classes that actually interest you.
Did You Know?
  • One of the most unique aspects of Bates is its calendar. The five-week spring Short Term enables students to focus on a single course, often one that they would not be able to take otherwise. Sample Short Term courses include: Roller Coasters (students study the mathematics behind roller coasters and visit theme parks), For the Love of Dogs (students read literature about dogs and visit dogs at animal shelters), Shakespeare in London (students spend two weeks on campus studying various Shakespeare plays and then travel to London, Canterbury, Stratford-upon-Avon, and Oxford for three weeks to see the plays and explore British culture).
  • During Short Term, the Student Activities Office runs an Experimental College, which consists of a variety of non-credit, extracurricular courses, such as bartending, yoga, ballroom dancing, knitting, and basic car mechanics.
  • Many Bates students also participate in service-learning programs. These include mentoring local children, developing community gardens with Lots to Gardens, or working with the Lewiston Housing Authority.

Student Polls

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?    Based on 7 responses

Strongly disagree
Strongly agree
  • The academic advisers are helpful.
  • It is easy to get the classes you want.
  • Grading is generally consistent and fair.
  • There are a variety of interesting courses to take.
  • Students are encouraged to explore a wide range of courses and topics.
  • My Gen-Ed requirements are worthwhile and meaningful.
  • The workload is easy to manage.
  • There are plenty of good online course options.
  • Teaching assistants (TAs) are used effectively.
  • The course scheduling/registration process is efficient and student-friendly.
  • Classrooms/labs are up-to-date and incorporate new technologies effectively.

How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements regarding the professors at this school?    Based on 5 responses

Strongly disagree
Strongly agree
  • Professors are approachable and helpful when needed
  • Professors are engaging and easy to understand.
  • Professors are experts in their field.
  • Professors are passionate about the topics they teach.
  • Professors care about their students' success.
  • Professors put a lot of effort into teaching their classes.
  • Professors use teaching assistants (TAs) effectively.


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